This is from a news article :

Republicans have pitched the measure as a middle-ground change to state abortion laws developed after months of private negotiations between House and Senate GOP members. It adds exceptions to the 12-week ban, extending the limit through 20 weeks for rape and incest and through 24 weeks for “life-limiting” fetal anomalies.

I looked up the verb 'pitch' in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary :

3a : to present or advertise especially in a high-pressure way : PLUG, PROMOTE

4a(1) : to cause to be at a particular level or of a particular quality

Although there aren't any adverbial phrases denoting a certain level, I think 'middle-ground' and 'adds exceptions' make the 'pitched' seem to mean 4a(1) more likely, despite the opposing positions of the parties which may suggest 3a.

Am I wrong?

  • 1
    Meaning 4a(1) is usually "pitched at". Meaning 3a is usually "pitched as". This example is "pitched as".
    – Peter
    May 14, 2023 at 13:20
  • @Peter Thank you very much.
    – user157844
    May 14, 2023 at 13:24
  • 1
    No, pitched here means plugged or promoted.
    – Lambie
    May 14, 2023 at 20:26

1 Answer 1


I think the most appropriate definition here is actually more like 3b or a metaphorical use of 3c:

b: attempt to persuade especially with a sales pitch
c : to present (a movie or program idea) for consideration (as by a TV producer)

My reading of the sentence is that the Republicans are presenting this idea, as a compromise which would make it more appealing. Pitch, in the context of proposed legislation, almost always means to present or to attempt to "sell" something. For example,

I understand why "as a middle-ground change" makes it sound like 4a1 might be appropriate, but pitched in this sense, where it means "at a particular level or quality" is almost always used with at:

A tuning fork that belonged to Ludwig van Beethoven around 1800, now in the British Library, is pitched at A = 455.4 Hz...

With a dfficulty pitched at "Close To Impossible"...

Since this was the advanced course, one hoped that it would be pitched at a high level, and it was.

  • Thank you very much for the detailed and kind explanation.
    – user157844
    May 14, 2023 at 13:23

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